Commercial Web2.0 sites sites have a business model where they offer free services, of which the cost of producing and maintaining is paid for by advertising. Use the visitor stats it collects, the commercial operator will convince companies to pay to show their advertising. It’s a cosy relationship, which depends on you implicitly agreeing to your computer download the images used as adverts.

In the past groups organising viewing boycotts have forced tv companies to respond to viewer requests through pressure of advertisers pulling out.

So would companies be willing to pay for advertising if they thought nobody would look at their ads appearing on a media site and as a result the entire web?

Enter Ad Block. This is an extension for Firefox web browser, it uses filters to remove or hide things you don’t want to see, namely ads.

Installing Firefox is painless

http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/new/

Once installed you can install Ad Block plus

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/adblock-plus/

http://adblockplus.org/en/getting_started

Using AdBlock plus is as simple as pointing and clicking on the adverts you don’t want.

Though for shop widgets, like the ones shown below, pointing and clicking isn’t enough – you need a little more power

The Guardian's own merchandising widgets

 

these filters will deal with the more deeply embedded HTML methods used to display the shops

guardian.co.uk##.m-guardianbookshop.promo-component
guardian.co.uk##.reader-offers.promo-component
guardian.co.uk##.soulmate.component.two-col.edge
guardian.co.uk##.ventures-slot-machine.news.component.two-col.last
guardian.co.uk##.ventures-slot-machine.news.component.two-col.last

The same page with ad filters turned on

 

Should you find any intractable ads leave a comment with a link to the page/site where you encountered the ad, and we ‘ll set our team of expert hacktivists to work on making a filter for you.

Of course just you doing this by yourself will only affect your computer – remember that the point is to do this so that the advertisers notice they are paying good money for ads that nobody looks at – in other words be loud about the fact you do it and encourage others to also do it.